Xi extends condolences over deaths after 7.8-magnitude earthquake kills more than 2,000 in Turkey, Syria
Published: Feb 06, 2023 06:03 PM
An earthquake with a magnitude of 7.8 jolted southeast Turkey and Syria on Monday Morning. Photo: IC

An earthquake with a magnitude of 7.8 jolted southeast Turkey and Syria on Monday Morning. Photo: IC


Chinese President Xi Jinping on Monday sent messages of condolence to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad respectively over strong earthquakes in the two countries. 

More than 2,000 deaths and thousands more injuries were reported as of the press time following the earthquake.

On behalf of the Chinese government and the Chinese people, Xi expressed deep condolences to the victims and sincere sympathy to the bereaved families and the injured. It is believed that under the leadership of the Turkish and Syrian presidents, the governments and peoples will overcome the impact of the disaster and rebuild their homeland at an early date, Xi said. 

According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), the 7.8-magnitude quake struck at 04:17 local time at a depth of 24.1 kilometers near the city of Nurdagi of Gaziantep Province in southern Turkey, which is located along its border with Syria. 

The Global Times learned from the Chinese Embassy in Turkey that no Chinese citizens have been killed or injured in Turkey so far.

A total of 1,498 people have died, 7,634 were injured and 2,834 buildings were damaged in Turkey, said Turkey's Disaster and Emergency Management Agency.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the quake was the most severe to hit the country since 1939.

In Syria, the Syrian Arab News Agency reported that a total of at least  820 people have died and 1,284 were injured in the quake. 

Xu Wei, spokesperson for the China International Development Cooperation Agency, said that China is in communication with the relevant authorities of the two countries and is ready to provide emergency humanitarian assistance according to the needs of the victims.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry earlier also extended condolences and expressed sympathies to the bereaved families and wounded.

We have been closely following the  earthquake that hit Turkey and Syria. We sincerely hope that the Turkish and Syrian people will overcome the disaster and rebuild their home at an early date, said ministry spokesperson Mao Ning at Monday's routine press briefing.

Mao said that after the earthquake, Chinese embassies and consulates in the region, including in Turkey and Syria, immediately activated emergency response mechanisms to verify the situation of Chinese citizens affected by the earthquake. So far, no Chinese casualties have been reported, the spokesperson confirmed. Chinese diplomatic and consular missions in the affected region will continue to closely follow the situation on the ground and provide consular protection and assistance to Chinese citizens there, said Mao.

Global Times